Autumn is a great time to prepare your home for winter! If you are a homeowner enjoying your home to the fullest, or getting ready to sell, these tips will guide you to have the best chances for a damage-free and energy-efficient home. Home buyers can use these tips to determine how well-cared for a home is during this season, and potential areas for improvements that need to be included moving forward.
1. Make exterior repairs. Visually inspect your home, including roof, siding/brick, and
foundation. Schedule any repairs now before cold, ice, and snow make work difficult or
2. Seal gaps where air (and critters!) could enter. Install weatherstripping around windows and
doors, add door sweeps, and use door stoppers. Caulk around windows and doors and fill
any small holes or larger gaps with hardware cloth to keep wildlife in the wild.
3. Mulch instead of rake leaves. This is always a well-received tip! Use your lawn mower,
without a bag and with a mulching blade to cut leaves into dime-sized pieces that will fall
amongst grass blades. Remember at the end of the season to prepare your mower for
winter using manufacturer’s guidelines.
4. Clean gutters and downspouts. Clogged gutters can damage roofs, home siding, and
foundations. Add extensions to to downspouts so water runs away from the foundation.
5. Shut off outside water pipes. Drain lawn irrigation systems and hoses, and store hoses
6. Test Sump Pump. Doing this before a large storm can avoid problems later. Slowly pour
several gallons of water in the pump to ensure it’s working.
7. Schedule an chimney sweep/inspection. If you don’t have a chimney cap, add one now!
See #2 regarding preventing critters from entering your home.
8. Schedule heating system maintenance. Ensuring your heating system is cleaned,
maintained, and in working order is a great safety measure, and can save you money on
emergency repairs and ensure your home is energy-efficient.
9. Reverse ceiling fans. If you have the option, reverse the direction of ceiling fans to push
heated air down into the room (warm air rises). This is also a good time to ensure the blades
are clean and dust-free.
10. Rest easy knowing your home is ready for winter!